Basics of the
Book of Daniel

Topic: Prophecy

Type: Article

Author:  A. A. Lewis

[See J. Barton Payne on Daniel in his The Theology of the Older Testament]

 NOTE: All DATES are approximate because the available information is incomplete.



1-605 BC Daniel taken. 70 years=605—535 BC

2-597 BC Ezekiel taken.

3-586 BC Most people taken. City and Temple burned and the walls dismantled.

4-582 BC

ARAMAIC PORTIONS OF THE OT: DAN 2:4b-7:28; GEN 31:47 [2 words]; JER 10:11 [1 sentence]; EZR 4:**-6:18; 7:12-26. ARAMAIC used for those parts dealing mostly with the foreign nations and Hebrew for the parts dealing mostly with the Kingdom of God.


Chapter 1: Daniel and friends carried away to Babylon and trained - 605 BC.

Chapter 2: Nebuchadnezzar’s dream: The four world powers AND the Kingdom of God (see also Chapter 7).

Chapter 3: The Firery Furnace. Our God is ABLE to deliver us.

Chapter 4: Nebuchadnezzar’s derangement and recovery. He praises God.

Chapter 5: The Hand writing on the wall. Chaldeans overthrown by the Medes.

Chapter 6: The Den of Lions.

Chapter 7: The four world powers AND the Kingdom of God (see also Chapter 2).

Chapter 8: The Medo-Persian and Greek world powers.

Chapter 9: Jeremiah’s 70 years come to an end. “70 weeks” of years [490 years] cover history from 605 BC to the end of Christ’s ministry, the rejection by the Jews at His first coming and the destruction of Jerusalem.



 “SEVENTY YEARS”: JER 25:11, 12; 29:10; 2CH 36:21; DAN 9:2; ZEC 7:5.

“The term of seventy years mentioned is not a so-called round number, but a chronologically exact prediction of the duration of Chaldean supremacy over Judah …This number is arrived at by means of the dates given by profane authors as well as those of the historians of Scripture. Nebuchadnezzar reigned 43 years, his son Evil-Merodach 2 years, Neriglissor 4 years, Labrosoarchad (according to Berosus) 9 months, and Naboned 17 years (43+2+4+17 years and 9 months are 66 years and 9 months). Add to this 1 year,–that namely which elapsed between the time when Jerusalem was first taken by Nebuchadnezzar, and the death of Nabopolassar and Nebuchadnezzar’s accession,—add further the 2 years of the reign of Darius the Mede (see on Dan 6:1), and we have 69 years. With this the biblical accounts also agree. Of Jehoiakim’s reign these give 7 years (from his 4th till his 11th year), for Jehoiachin’s 3 months, for the captivity of Jehoiachin in Babylon until the accession of Evil-Merodach 37 years (see 2 Kings 25:27, according to which Evil-Merodach, when he became king, set Jehoiachin at liberty on the 27th day of the 12th month, in the 37th year after he had been carried away). Thus, till the beginning of Evil-Merodach’s reign, we would have 44 years and 3 months to reckon, there till the fall of the Babylonian empire 23 years and 9 months, and 2 years of Darius the Mede, i.e. in all 70 years complete” [Jeremiah, Lamentations. K & D Vol. VIII-vol. i pages 374, 375].


 70 weeks of years = 490 years. This was for the accomplishing of the Messiah’s priestly work [DAN 9:24]

 In 538 BC the decree authorizing the rebuilding of the temple was given [EZR 1:1-4; ISA 44:28].


   458 BC   = the extended authorization by Artaxerxes I [465-424 BC] for rebuilding the city walls [EZR 4:11, 12, 23; 7:18, 25; 9:9]. This REBUILDING was finished in 444 BC

+483       = 69 weeks of years [69 x 7 OR 483 YEARS]

   +1       = to account for the change from BC to AD


   26 AD   = beginning of Jesus ministry [baptism at age 30; therefore He was born 5 BC].

   +3    = the length of His ministry ending with His SACRIFICIAL DEATH ON THE CROSS

=====       It is finished [JOH 19:30].

   30 AD   = in the midst of the week [DAN 9:27]. [Spring].

   3   = The Jews cut themselves off–Stephen’s stoning and Paul’s conversion.


  33 AD= completion of the 70th week. End of “70 weeks” of DAN 9:24.

+37= This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled[MAT 24:34]


70 AD   = Jerusalem and the Temple destroyed and Jews dispersed.


Chapter 11: Persia, Greece and Rome.


Chapter 10: Vision of Christ (?) OR the archangel.

Chapter 12: at that time

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This Page Last Updated: 03/08/08 A. Allison Lewis